True story: we’re geeking out on gac. The superfruit with the super weird name, gac fruit (formally known around the science circles as Momordica cochinchinensis—try saying that three times fastonce) is a rare seasonal fruit found only in Southeast Asia that is packed full of age-defying antioxidants, including carotenoids and polyphenols, as well as Vitamins A, C & E.
While Asia’s best-kept health and beauty secret is only more recently on our radar, the people of Southeast Asia have cherished this “fruit from heaven” for thousands of years. And for good reason—the prickly orange powerhouse boasts a higher concentration of carotenoids (the potent antioxidants that defend the skin and body against free radical damage) than you’ll find in any other natural foods, including 10 times more beta-carotene than carrots! We’re also looking at levels of lycopene, the free-radical fighting carotenoid found in red fruits and vegetables like watermelons, red carrots, papaya and pink grapefruit that preliminary research shows may fight premature skin ageing and help prevent heart disease, atherosclerosis, and even breast and prostate cancers. Good news for those who can’t stomach nightshades or are allergic to the better-known queen of lycopene: gac fruit is known to have 75 times more lycopene than tomatoes! Better yet, bioavailability—a key component to your bod digesting and absorbing these incredible antioxidants—ranks higher with gac fruit than with tomatoes and carrots, which means gac’s got you covered to actually reap the health and beauty benefits of consuming said antioxidants.
This all to say, we won’t be ditching our tried and true produce anytime soon. However, adding some nutrient dense gac into the mix just might be a game-changer. If you’re able to find the exotic fruit IRL, expect a mild taste similar to avocados, with a softly bitter cucumber-esque aroma. For our own fruity fix, we’re using a can to get as much as we can; swapping out sodas and sports drinks for gấc, a deliciously drinkable gac-infused water loaded with vitamins, omega 3s, essential fatty acids and polyphenols, and lacking any added sugars, artificial sweeteners and preservatives.
Serious about health? Start sipping your superfruits, and go get your gac on. Love to drink your beauty benefits? Try these 4 healthy-skin beverages that instantly deliver a glowier, clearer complexion.